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Title: SWEET FIRE
Autor: J.H. Croix
Genre: Contemporary Romance
About SWEET FIRE:
Charlie Lane doesn’t have time for fairytales. Jesse Franklin might be handsome, and perhaps dangerously sexy, but she doesn’t have time.
Jesse finds Dr. Lane uptight and oh-so-professional, yet he can’t help but be drawn to her. He’d love to see her with her hair down—in more ways than one.
Charlie’s life is complicated. She’s taking care of her ailing mother and stumbling through a crash course in parenting a teenager. Her niece has spiky purple hair and an attitude for days. The last thing on Charlie’s mind is romance. Most especially not romance with her neighbor Jesse whose a hotshot firefighter and has the side effect of practically setting her on fire.
The first time Jesse sees Charlie with her guard down, he’s hooked. She’s brilliant, gorgeous, and challenges him in ways he never expected. He knows her life is complicated. He doesn’t do complicated. Or so he thought.
Jesse ends up surprising Charlie again and again. He’s much more than a hotshot firefighter who’s too handsome for his own good. She finds she just might want him to rescue her. Yet, she’s independent and has pieced together her small family’s life in the aftermath of painful, unexpected losses.
She finds herself falling for Jesse—hard. Passion burns hot and fast between them, threatening to burn her defenses to ash. All the while, she’s facing painful choices as she tries to take care of her mother and learn how to be a mother to a cranky teenager who tests her emotional limits daily. She’s not used to depending on anyone, much less believing in happily-ever-after.
Meanwhile, Jesse is fighting to prove to Charlie he can be the man she needs—when she doesn’t even believe she needs anyone’s help. Charlie fights against letting herself be vulnerable. All the while her heart is in so deep with Jesse, she doesn’t know how to protect herself.
Jesse’s strength is intoxicating, so much so, Charlie can’t help but fall a little harder for him.
“Oh,” was my brilliant response.
Sensation was prickling over my skin at his nearness. Mingling with that was a rushing sense of uncertainty. My mind was so accustomed to constantly worrying—about work, about my mom, about Em. Letting my worries go, even if only for a little while, seemed foreign. The hamster in my brain was used to running overtime on the spinning wheel of my thoughts. I wondered if I even knew how to even do this anymore. This being anything remotely related to desire.
I hoped it was a bit like riding a bike.
I didn’t realize I’d spoken aloud until Jesse’s grin stretched from one side of his mouth to the other. “I think it probably is,” he murmured.
His gaze searched my face, his grin slowly fading.
“I can walk you back home,” he said, his tone low and quiet.
Holding his gaze, I tried to take a slow breath. But with my heart pounding hard and fast, I couldn’t quite get that much air inside my lungs. I realized he was picking up on my anxiety. Because he was decent guy, he was giving me an out, a perfectly easy out.
As deep as my anxiety ran, it couldn’t override the need rushing through me like a river in spring. I’d watched the water pouring down over a cliff on a mountainside the other day and been amazed at its force and speed. I felt like that inside. As if my body had been frozen and quiet, and now it was thawing and everything was running wild.
Even if it was only once, even if it was awkward later, I could give myself this. Because nothing had chipped through the ice of my defenses the way Jesse had. Looking back at him, I shook my head. “No, you can walk me home later.” And then I caught his hand in mine and tugged him toward me.
Just like that, I forgot everything else.
About the Author:
USA Today Bestselling Author J. H. Croix lives in a small town in the historical farmlands of Maine with her husband and two spoiled dogs. Croix writes steamy contemporary romance with strong independent women and rugged alpha men who aren’t afraid to show some emotion. Her love for quirky small-towns and the characters that inhabit them shines through in her writing. Take a walk on the wild side of romance with her bestselling novels!
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